Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks Havre Game Check Station had a busy weekend over Nov. 21-22, with many successful hunters stopping by. This was the seventh weekend that the check station has been open, and the fifth weekend for general big game.
The weather was mild with temperatures in the 30s-40s with little wind. There was no precipitation over the weekend. “Weather this weekend did not appear to limit hunter access or participation”, said Biologist Scott Hemmer, “and hunter success for the weekend was high.”
Hunter activity was slower on Saturday, but picked up on Sunday. There were 82 parties with a total of 157 hunters who passed through the check station over the weekend. Hunter numbers were down 2% from last year and were 14% below the 5-year average.
For mule deer, 76 deer were brought by the station (74 bucks and two does) over the weekend, which was up 111% from last year, but was still 15% below the long-term average. For the year, mule deer harvest (296) is up 66% from last year, and 25% below the long-term average.
White-tailed deer were just below last year’s total, with nine bucks and one doe brought through the check station. Harvest for white-tails was still 63% below the long-term average for week 7. For the year, white-tail harvest (41) is up 32% from last year, and 67% below the long-term average.
Elk numbers saw a slight decrease from last year, with 5 bulls and 1 cow brought by the station. This was down 33% from last year for the weekend, and 14% below the long-term average. For the year, elk harvest (33) is up 10% from last year, and 12% below the long-term average.
Ten pheasants, three sharp-tailed grouse, one Hungarian partridge, and 18 ducks were brought by the check station over the weekend. Pheasant harvest (725) is down 6% from last year and 14% from the long-term average. Sharp-tailed grouse (175) is up 3% from last year and 37% above the long-term average. Hungarian partridge harvest (126) is 85% above last year and 130% above the long-term average. Duck harvest (62) is down 6% from last year, but up 79% from the long-term average.
Remember that all hunters are required by law to stop as directed at all designated check stations on their way to and from hunting, even if they have no game to be checked. The big game season ends at one-half hour after sunset on Sunday, Nov. 29.
See this and more at www.mt.fwp.gov, and follow FWP Region 6 on Facebook.